The Department of Justice is responsible for coordinating 62 statutory entities across the state of Victoria, including Courts and Tribunals in Melbourne. Their duties include the prevention, detection, and prosecution of crimes, support of victims of crime, dispensing of justice, and the management of offenders in correctional settings. Court Services is responsible for providing the public a safe environment for hearings, overseeing security across the various Courts, Tribunals, Statutory authorities and specialised courts.
Court Services is responsible for security across all the Courts and Tribunals across a large demographic region — over 60 locations spread across the Melbourne metropolitan area and the state of Victoria. It was identified that there was no systematic process to record security related incidents across all Courts and Tribunals within a unified system.
Security implications and associated risks across all jurisdictions it faces on a day to day basis are key areas for the Courts and Tribunals. Each jurisdiction was either recording/collating information in isolation, or sharing with other areas on an as needs basis.
As security incidents occurred there was no timely and efficient method for key business stakeholders to have knowledge of its occurrence. It was up to the person that had knowledge of the incident and their knowledge of who they thought the information should be communicated to. Often the channel of communication may have taken days to filter to the appropriate person.
It was difficult for the Courts and the Department of Justice to know at any precise point in time the security risks and trends that were occurring across all the Courts and Tribunals. Collating information was a very labour intensive process due to the dispersed localities, and a very time consuming exercise that required many staff members.
SIMTRACK was identified as the solution that provided the structure, framework and processes enabling the Court Security Coordination Unit to meet their obligation to manage and track security related incidents across all its jurisdictions and report these trends to the Department's executive.
3 Dimensional Consulting – working with the Court Security Coordination Unit – deployed SIMTRACK in over 60 locations in Melbourne metropolitan and across the state of Victoria, where it was to be used by over 100 staff. SIMTRACK's flexible but tightly structured secure access model meant it was able to fulfil the diverse access requirements across all the state's Courts and Tribunals.
Where jurisdictional boundaries were crossed, it was critical that whilst data privacy was maintained, the flexibility to allow personnel access to their own data was vitally important. This didn't pose any issue through SIMTRACK's versatile hierarchical access model.
Access and data privacy was able to be implemented at all vertical and horizontal lines of personnel.
Key Court and Tribunal personnel report security related incidents guided through an easy to use data entry wizard. The SIMTRACK data entry framework ensures pivotal information is always captured in a unified process and not lost. This information provides powerful insights through the real-time inbuilt reporting, allowing select staff to identify trends, risks and incident hot-spots. Previously this information may have been stored in personal mail files, spreadsheets and personal notes.
Sustainable cost savings in personnel time has been gained for the Department of Justice, whilst the Court Security Coordination Unit — who oversee all of the Courts and Tribunals security, and those responsible for security within their own jurisdiction — have seen an increase in staff productivity and efficiency. Less time is spent on collating and managing information and focus is now directed and better served towards overseeing and analysing security matters.
When initially deployed, the success of SIMTRACK and return on investment was instant. Information regarding high risk incidents reported through SIMTRACK was able to be shared and reviewed by the Security and Executive team immediately. Rapid workflow notifications communicated information to security stakeholders. Quick responsive decisions and actions were able to be taken within hours; where in the past this information may have been provided through various time delayed methods and formats leading to days of delayed action. SIMTRACK's centralised data repository meant the same consistent information was able to be shared and viewed by authorised key business stakeholders quickly.
The Court Security Coordination Unit performs various Incident forensics through SIMTRACK's secure administrative access, building case histories for the more involved incidents. Communication with various external agencies, repeat offenders/Persons of Interest can be profiled and incidents cross linked amongst other functions. The reported information is now readily available to authorised key personal that need to be aware of such matters.
With a highly secured and unified environment, powerful in built reporting makes information that was previously cumbersome and time consuming to produce now readily available in real time.
The ability to analyse matters across all jurisdictions or specific locations allows informed business decisions to be made and effective preventative measures put in place, mitigating risk, loss of money, and improving public safety.
SIMTRACK has improved and fast tracked the decision review making process for key business stakeholders, improved the efficient of reporting incidents and provided sustainable cost savings across all jurisdictions.